An excerpt.

Christmas, 2007 / No. 19
Art by Ian Phillips
Ian Phillips

I cut this guy’s ass one time with a razor. These are the kinds of things I got into after I thought it was over with Elijah, that one whole year where I thought I’d never hear from him again. It was as if I had to see more blood around. As if I had to have a razor for protection. I had to have them on me just in case. Razors come in packages of five.

I’d cut myself once, a little spot on my thigh. It was like cutting a steak. I think that’s why I took the necklace off, the malachite Rastafarian choker that he made me. When I took that thing off, I realized I didn’t want to cut myself. I wanted to cut someone else.

I met this guy at the park, sat near to him on a bench and we talked a bit, about the weather or something. He looked pretty young. He was reading a book by Theodor Adorno.

The thing that happened between me and this guy, I guess that was sort of a compulsion. I mean, I’d planned things, but I don’t know where the plan came from. I guess the urge to hurt someone has its own plan. I liked this guy for being so willing.

He lay over my lap on a ratty two-seater in his room. We’d smoked up about an hour before. It was really strong stuff—the guy had a system in his closet. The couch was plaid in all shades of brown, it was way too rough for me to be on there naked. The guy’s underwear and cords were bunched up at his ankles. His face was smashed into the corner of the couch, in the dirty abyss between the pillow and the springs. It was hard to squeeze even a tiny bit of flesh because his ass was too thin. If he moved, I mean squirmed, I would’ve gotten up and left. Because he stayed still, the scene went further.

I knew from the back of his neck he was scared. Mushroom patterns of rashes appeared.

I did it quick, pressed the razor blade down and slid it once sharp through his greyish behind. Blood in small bumps pushed up in the line, one by one, like cartoon bubbles. I watched the movement of the blood, not the length of my cut. The blood on the line appeared blacker and blacker. It freaked me out quite a bit, because right then I had the thought that this guy was a witch. And I thought, “What’s he going to do to me in the future? ” I let go of my pinch and threw the blade to the floor.

The skin of the guy’s ass flooded with pink and replenished. The cut I’d made was no bigger than a stitch. I felt his skin prickle. I think he wanted me to cut him again.

It is hard to feel things that happen behind you, but this guy knew what was happening behind him.

I watched his blood dry in a watercolour stain.

Maybe when I was up and out of this room I could duplicate my courage without drugs. I knew he wanted us to smoke up some more. I knew he wanted me to try it again. But I wasn’t about to let him convince me to do anything.

The guy was starting to squirm. He’d gotten hard near my thighs.

I could fuck you, he thought.

No way, I thought back. (I kept this thought to myself.)

The guy’s entire weight on me changed. I changed, he changed. He felt like a mule now or something, his skin prickling up with short hairs. It happens too quickly that something so hot could turn into regular sex. I thought if the guy shot his sperm in the dirty brown couch, a being would fertilize inside the foam. The nice little creature of a witch and an ass!

Cut me again, the guy was pleading, the razor’s right there!

I tensed my legs. He knew not to press. I’d cry if I was too sure of what I was doing in his room. I was not going to cut him again.

Now I realized we were in the exact same position we’d been in when we started. But I am not the kind of person to be able to say something like, “Now I am going to put my finger in your ass.” Though I was forced into action by staying in his room. The room was still charged, so I couldn’t escape.

He thought I was going to leave, but he convinced me to stay. To act up some more. This is your potential. He thought that hard enough that I heard it.

A naked guy’s ass was on my lap. He would’ve gone down on me or done anything I asked. But I wanted something more spiritual.

I stroked the slit I’d just made with the razor blade. I woke it back up so that more blood came out. Its colour did not make me nervous any more. I drew a line with my finger from the cut to his ass. Blood was the marker. I fiddled in.

Now he was scared. It was that wind in his ass.

Yes, your ass can open, you bitch. I wanted to finger his ass until he came.

If this skinny grey witch was as powerful as me, he surely couldn’t show it now.

As I fucked in with my fingers, I let the guy moan. I didn’t care.

I thought of a place when you are young, when you’re scared of a dog so you run away, run into your bedroom, people put you to sleep.

I’m not going to stop.

With that little attention I made him relax.

The muscles in the back of his legs were spasming.

Sometimes you just have to relax.

Relax. Relax.

I’m in control.

The air in his room was buzzing with sound. We’d forgotten to turn the radio off.

Now grab yourself, it’s O.K.

The guy held his dick and he started to breathe as push by push I embedded my finger. I spit in his hole. I could jab hard enough.

Relax, relax, you have to relax.

I felt like leaving this wretched fuck. If I’d had oil, he would’ve relaxed. Think of the woman who’s really relaxed. A woman who’ll wiggle her hips, her big pelvis and tits. A woman, she can really relax.

“All right,” I said, finally speaking out loud. “Now you can move!”

I’d never felt a body so stiff. Relax you fool! I’m good at all this.

The guy let out a croak from the back of his throat. Finally he was getting used to being diddled. His back looked elastic, I went in and then out. I added a thumb, he added a wave, the rhythm together accomplishing a twist. I tickled him there as deep as I could. I felt a region of opening grey.

Suddenly, his asshole clamped around my fingers. The sounds were unbearable, even to him.

When I slid my fingers out of his ass the guy fell off the couch, writhed around on the floor. Sperm threaded through the creases in his fist. I crouched down beside him and watched him up close. He kept his eyes hidden in the crook of his elbow.

“God I love you,” he said.

I breathed. It felt pink.

“You’re powerful,” I told him. I told him the truth.

The guy let me see one blue spot of his eye. I knew he would’ve done anything I wanted. But I also knew if I let him touch me then, I’d be cooped up with him, a violent dog, for hours and hours.

As I stood up to go, he started breathing extra fast. His mouth was misshapen. He took his arm off his face.

I’ll admit that he was a beautiful boy, with those blotchy cheeks and rabid eyes. He was in shock. We stared at each other. Now I was tired enough to go home and sleep.

I realized after this encounter, I had a major excess of energy to account for.

Tamara Faith Berger writes fiction, non-fiction, and screenplays. Her novel Queen Solomon was nominated for a Trillium Book Award. Her work has appeared in Apology, Canadian Art, and Canadian Notes and Queries. Last updated summer, 2021.